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BlackBerry’s share of the smartphone market hits depressing low

by Killian Bell | February 16, 2017February 16, 2017 4:17 am PDT

BlackBerry is fighting to keep its smartphone business alive and refuses to give up on new handsets, but new figures show the Canadian company is still struggling. Despite being the king of smartphones a decade ago, BlackBerry’s market share is now 0.0 percent.

BlackBerry hit the new low during the fourth quarter of 2016, according to estimates from Gartner. It managed to ship just 207,900 handsets, down from 906,900 in Q4 2015. In comparison, Apple shipped over 77 million iPhones, while the number of Android-powered handsets sold during the three-month period surpasses 352 million.

It essentially means that BlackBerry is starting from scratch under its new partnership with TCL, the Chinese firm now responsible for BlackBerry-branded hardware in almost all markets around the world. It has already launched the DTEK50 and DTEK60 devices, and the much-anticipated BlackBerry Mercury is coming soon.

BlackBerry probably won’t be too concerned about the decline; it’s not as though it will come as a surprise. The company has already shifted its focus to services and developing security solutions for Android. However, some fans may be wondering why the company didn’t adopt Android many moons ago instead of pursuing the BlackBerry 10 operating system.

BlackBerry isn’t the only one struggling, though. The number of Windows smartphones sold in Q4 2016 dropped to just 1.09 million from 4.39 million last year, giving Microsoft just 0.3 percent of the market. This means Apple and Google were responsible for over 99 percent of the 431.5 million smartphones sold worldwide last quarter.

Although Android’s share is bigger than iOS’s, Apple managed to sell more handsets that Samsung to become the world’s biggest smartphone vendor. Huawei took third place after shipping 40.8 million devices, while Oppo landed in fourth with 26.7 million.


Killian Bell

Killian Bell is a 20-something technology journalist based in a tiny town in England. He has an obsession with that little company in Cupertino...